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Old 10-10-2007, 09:00 AM
 
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Default Deschutes Steelhead Trip

Well, I just returned from a business/ pleasure trip to Oregon. I had the opportunity to try some steelhead fishing on the Deschutes River. I have to say this was one of the most exciting trips I have ever been on. I fished for 2 days and was able to land 2 steelhead on my second day!!!!! My guide was awesome and I would recommend him to anyone interested in learning how to Spey cast and catch fish on the Deschutes. His name is Matt McCrary and is not only an excellent guide and casting instructor, but he is also a lot of fun to hang out with on the river! Let me know if anyone needs additional contact info. After my trip I found out that he was featured in some great photos in the "The Drake" magazine volume 9 issue 1 spring edition, pg 65-68.
He taught a single handed trout fly fisherman for many year how to spey cast in a very short time and he was very patience and helpful. Spey casting is a BLAST and very exhausting. It is amazing how much line you can get out on the water and your ability to cover almost every square inch of water.
The first day it was sunny and windy, I spent most of the day learning the different types of casts, I had 1 hit, but did not hook it. I learned that trying to hook a steelhead is much different than trying to hook a trout. When hooking a trout you need to set the hook immediately when you feel a strike, but when trying to hook a steelhead, you need to hold perfectly still and allow the fish to take several feet of line off the reel before setting the hook. Well, on the first day after about '500' casts, I felt a small hit, I did nothing and a second later I felt another hit, this is when I moved the rod about 3 inches(can you blame me?) and lost the fish. My guide just laughed after he asked me "did you move that rod??", and I replied like a little kid with his hand caught it the cookie jar "yyeess??". I was told that even that smallest of rod movement was enough to scare the fish.
Next Day:
To make a long story short, it was raining the entire second day, which was great for fishing. I was able to hook 2 steelhead correctly and land them, the first was about 9 pounds and the second was about 11. It was the most excitement I have ever had catching a fish!!! I think my guide was more excited than I was. All weekend I only saw one other guy hook a fish, which he did not land. I was told by many to catch 2 in one day was a worthy feet! I could go on and on, but I will end my report now.
I can't wait to do it Again.
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Old 10-10-2007, 11:02 AM
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Default Re: Deschutes Steelhead Trip

Hi gvollmer,

Sounds like a terrific trip. Isn't the Deschutes a grand river. I was looking for your post just yesterday so I could ask about the trip. Can you tell us about the rod, reel and line you were using? I would be especially interested in what reel you used. What fly did you catch the fish on? It sounds like you were using an egg pattern of some kind.

Frank
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Old 10-12-2007, 07:23 AM
 
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Default Re: Deschutes Steelhead Trip

I was using equipment provided by my guide, so here is what I remember. I was using a Sage Z-axis rod 7wt 13' 6". I was using a Ross large arbor reel, but I don't remember what model, sorry! I was not using an egg pattern. I was using streamer patterns. I used a "skater" flash pattern the first morning, mostly when I was learning the Spey cast. The rest of the time I was using a Purple Angel streamer pattern. This is what I caught both fish on. When I had a "hit", but did not hook the fish I sometimes switched to a streamer that represented something with more natural colors, but with no success. I hope this helps!

PS. I only had 2 windknots throughout my 1000+ casts! "I told my guide it is a lot harder to tie a good knot in the air with no hands or teeth then it is the traditional way!"

I think I am going to try to plan a trip to the AU Sable river in MI next spring for trout. This is a place that is about 6 hours away from were I live, so I could drive. Anybody have and info or recommendation on this???
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Old 10-12-2007, 10:15 AM
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Default Re: Deschutes Steelhead Trip

Gvollmer,

Thanks for the information. Were you using sink tip lines or floating lines?

The Au Sable water shed has some good fishing. One problem is it is fished hard. A good contact is Gates Au Sable Lodge. They can fix you up with lodging and guides. If you are thinking about fishing Michigan I recommend this book: Trout Streams of Michigan by Bob Linsenman and Steve Nevala. The book covers all of the major rivers and streams in Michigan. It provides maps and parking locations for the do-it-yourself fisherman. It is available from Amazon.

You might also consider fishing the Manistee, Little Manistee, Pere Marquette and the Pine. These are all located on the west coast of Michigan.

Frank
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Old 10-16-2007, 08:23 AM
 
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Default Re: Deschutes Steelhead Trip

I was using a Floating Tip Line.
Thanks for the info on the Au Sable.
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